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Mold company opens eco-friendly offices

A MOLD business which started 15 years ago with just three members of staff has celebrated the opening of its new headquarters.

Renewable energy company West Coast Group, which now employs 194 people, opened its new eco-friendly offices on Mold Business Park last week.

Welsh Assembly Minister for Environment and Sustainable Development John Griffiths opened the building, which has been built to be as sustainable as possible.

Founder Gerry Jewson said: “We are really proud and pleased with the building. We’ve come a long way in the past 15 years.”

Gerry and wife Paula, who is the group finance director and company secretary, decided to set up their own business in 1996 after Gerry was made redundant from Manweb.

He said: “I had the choice of moving my family away from the area to find another job or setting up my own business.“Mold is such a good location, particularly for bringing up young children, and we didn’t want to leave.”

The company now has bases around the country, in locations including Inverness, Edinburgh and Shrewsbury.

It has also set up a base in Poland.

About 90 staff are employed in Mold and the company was running out of space in its previous office.

Paula said: “We had outgrown our old offices but also wanted somewhere which used renewable energy and was sustainable.

“We have permission for a wind turbine and once that is up and running the building will be completely self- sustaining – apart from the water which we get through Welsh Water.”

The West Coast Group is made up of a number of companies which deal with renewable energy sectors, including West Coast Energy which specialises in wind energy projects.

Gerry said: “Since we set up the business the technology has moved on leaps and bound and wind energy is no longer an ‘alternative’ technology.”

Mr Griffiths said: “As a government, we are urging businesses and organisations across Wales to think and operate much more sustainably and I am encouraged by the ongoing efforts of the West Coast Group of companies to help businesses put sustainability principles right at the centre of their operations.”